28 Aug 2014 by Adeliyn Lim-
I am currently in my mid-twenties. I am in the age range when wedding invitations come nearly on a monthly basis; when one can choose which wedding to attend; the time when you are also shown random pictures of bulging bellies and pictures of your friends’ toddlers a few months after.
As these good things are being experienced in my friends’ lives, I came to realise that I was psychologically affected by this phenomenon. This psychological disturbance is further provoked when overly concerned aunties and friends give the all-knowing “when is your turn?” winks, nudges, and verbalised questions. Cue, the inward cringe when they find out/realize that I am indefinitely single.
Whenever this happens, I am always tempted to brandish Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 7:8, “Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do.” But I never do so, as brandishing the Word for such a reason is akin to blasphemy. Moreover, I believe that my reason of being, is something more than just my relationship status.
Singlehood: A Designated Time of My Life
“So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him.” (2 Peter 3:14)
The verse above gave me the realisation that singlehood is the time when I can make use of my time to gain unfettered access to the Lord. It is the time to cultivate my personal relationship with Him, without being hindered by thoughts of service to my spouse, children and the household in general.
It is time to build my anchor in the God who is my All-in-All for the future, that when the push comes to shove, I will not drift away. Rather than to anchor my hopes and dreams onto my spouse or children (making them into my idols), instead I will always draw closer to Him and trust Him to provide, come what may.
Relationships are Not to be Rushed Headlong into
As the Beloved sings in the Song of Songs 8:4, “Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.”
I learned to question myself whenever I feel “rushed” to get myself into a relationship in this manner: Firstly, what is the condition of my heart? Secondly, do I have ulterior motives in getting a relationship? But more importantly, whose voice am I listening to? This then becomes the plumb line for my own conduct, and in my daily interactions with the opposite gender.
Besides, marriage is not for the faint of heart! Paul says in 1 Corinthians 7:28 that those who marry will face many troubles in this life. The reason is simple: Marriage is a daily sanctifying institution, which requires resilience, adaptability and maturity from both partners to work. It takes time, deliberation and faith to take on the task you have pledged to each other “till death do us part”.
Acceptance and Submission to God’s Gift in this Season.
“I wish that all of you were as I am. But each of you has your own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.” (1 Corinthians 7:7)
Being single is a gift just as much as being in marriage is a gift. Being of one relationship status is not any less significant than in another relationship status in the Lord’s eyes. Both are equally relevant positions in God’s eyes, and are equally useful in His plans. Acceptance of this is paramount as it affects how significant you feel in the Kingdom. Submission enables you to be significant in the Kingdom, and for the Kingdom.
The Big Idea is this: What makes you significant is your significance in the Lord.
For Jesus did not die on the cross for certain individuals! He died on the cross for everyone on this earth (1 John 2:2). That makes each and every one of us significant, regardless of our relationship status. Therefore, those of us who are single, we are significantly single in Him.
My singlehood is part of God’s plan for me. What is important for me to find out what He intends for me at this point in time, and leave the rest to Him to holds my future.
‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ (Jeremiah 29:11)
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Adeliyn Lim has oscillated between Kuantan, Penang and KL, currently working as a human resources specialist in a telecommunications company. She admits that the walk with God is at times like a walk on the beach in sunny weather and at times like stumbling on cobbled alleys on dark, stormy days. Her philosophy in life is, “Life is a bed of roses. Thorns included.”